An informal introduction to The Satanic Temple Ministry
What does it mean to be a Minister with The Satanic Temple?
This is a complex question with many relevant answers. From a purely legal perspective, becoming an ordained Minister of Satan means that you can legally perform weddings and funerals in a manner consistent with your deeply held beliefs as a Satanist. Within our religious community, becoming ordained is a demonstration of a deep level of knowledge and commitment. Our chapter leaders will be able to trust that they can turn to ordained members to lead religious services or rituals if the circumstances require it.
People will inevitably have different expectations for what they think it means to be a Minister of Satan. This document is an introduction to what it means specifically for The Satanic Temple, as well as what it does not mean.
This list is simple and introductory. If you read this over and decide you want to know more details about The Satanic Temple Ministry and the Ordination Program, you should read the Ordination Standards and the Ordination FAQ.
Ministry signifies depth of knowledge.
Being ordained into The Satanic Temple Ministry is a sign that you have achieved a significant level of understanding of the philosophy of Satanism, the history and mission of The Satanic Temple, and the motivation and importance of our activism. New members of The Satanic Temple may turn to ordained members of The Satanic Temple Ministry as role models and trusted teachers as they pursue the development of their own Satanic philosophy.
Ministers are officiants.
Being ordained into The Satanic Temple Ministry means that you have the knowledge and capacity to lead Satanic rituals and religious services. Members of leadership in The Satanic Temple know they can delegate ritual responsibilities to you and trust that you will know how to carry them out effectively and in accordance with our traditions and beliefs. However, ordained ministers must still follow the protocols and restrictions laid out by our church. Any minister leading unsanctioned ceremonies will have their ordination and membership in The Satanic Temple permanently revoked.
Ministry does not confer organizational power.
Being ordained into The Satanic Temple Ministry allows you to perform certain ceremonies that are more public-facing, such as marriages and funerals. However, being a Minister of Satan does not grant any powers, privileges, or roles within the organization. Ministers do not occupy any special position within our Chapters, Committees, or other initiatives. Any Minister who attempts to challenge the authority of a Chapter Head or to carry out any activities that are under the purview of Chapter Leadership will have their ordination permanently revoked.
Ministers are not counselors.
Being ordained into The Satanic Temple Ministry does not certify you as a counselor. Being an ordained minister makes you a trusted member of our community, and people may approach you for advice or input. We understand that you want to help your friends and members of our community in every way that you can. However, the word "counseling" has a very specific meaning in some contexts, and it is illegal to provide grief counseling or similar services unless you have a degree in counseling or certification in a related field. If you are certified to perform counseling, you should make that fact very clear before you engage in any activity that is beyond the scope of what is allowed simply by the fact that you are an ordained Minister.
Ministers are not spokespersons.
Being ordained into The Satanic Temple Ministry does not grant you permission to speak on behalf of The Satanic Temple. As an ordained Minister, you may be approached by the press, or even by strangers on social media, asking you to clarify some position of or fact about The Satanic Temple. Part of the training Candidates receive in the Ordination Program addresses how Ministers are to interact with the media.
Ministry is a personal milestone.
Perhaps the most significant answer to the question "What does it mean to be a Minister with The Satanic Temple?" is the personal one: being ordained into The Satanic Temple Ministry is a material demonstration of commitment and passion for the pursuit of one's own religious development. It is an achievement that serves as a personal milestone that we can celebrate for ourselves and for each other.
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